Metrics make the business world go round. Reports, sales forecasts, charts, graphs – no matter what the end-result may be, numbers dictate how your firm is run. And the same should be true for your search engine optimization efforts.
But what, exactly, should businesses be measuring? It’s a great question, and one that continues to evolve as analytical and Web management tools improve.
At the most basic level, a critical success of your SEO efforts is where your company shows up on search results. After all, approximately 75 percent of Google Search users don’t even make it to the second page of search results, so getting on that first page is of critical importance. In fact, for many firms, this is the only metric of success.
Let’s say a small business works with an affordable SEO service provider. At the outset of the engagement, their site pops up on, let’s say, the 7th page of Google Search results. The provider rolls out a methodical SEO plan – spoiler alert: there are no such things as short-cuts when it comes to SEO – and within six months, they jump to #8. That is success – and it takes a ton of work to maintain that success.
But there are other metrics as well, such as an increase in Web site visitors, time spent on site, and perhaps most importantly, improved conversion rates.
Ultimately, when you embark on your SEO efforts, either in-house or with a third-party provider, you need to keep the end result in mind. What are your goals? What does success look like? Define it early on, and measure it religiously.